Just six months ago, Farmscape's yield tracker crossed 10,000 pounds of food. Later this week, that tally will have doubled since January, a testament to the growing number of people in Los Angeles who are excited to have access to the most flavorful and sustainably grown produce around. We owe a sincere thanks to our members, whose feedback drives us to innovate and whose kind words have gotten their friends and families excited about replacing their landscape with a Farmscape.
When I was speaking with a colleague about this milestone, we reflected on the decision to use pounds of food harvested as our key metric when measuring our progress toward our social mission. It can be really difficult to construct a comprehensive metric for sustainability, a point which is made powerfully by the journalist Frederick Kaufman during a TEDx talk earlier this year. Instead of trying to figure out a goofy formula that equates a gallon of water and a pound of carbon dioxide, Jesse's idea was to focus on yield.
I was not the biggest fan of this metric at first. I thought that it missed the point - after all, growing the food was a means to an end, whether that end was saving water, reducing carbon emissions, growing the tastiest produce available, or offering a unique educational experience for young kids. The problem was that all of these things were both important but also impossible to equate. Yield, on the other hand, elegantly serves as a convenient proxy for all these variables.
Another reason to focus on yield is that we consider ourselves to be farmers and not gardeners, a subtle but important distinction that Sean made previously on the blog. That is not to imply that there is anything wrong with gardening, but simply that we hold ourselves to a higher standard when it comes to expertly planning and managing the raised bed plots.
Ten tons is a lot of food but we are looking forward to growing a lot more.